Friday, November 6, 2009

T-Minus 30: Deep Dish Polenta Pizza

(Hey all I'm back, for the moment. I'm not making a big deal about it, because for all I know it'll be another 3 months before I post again.)

Thought I'd try introducing a new category on this site "T-Minus 30": Dinners that should be ready to go in about 30 minutes. This assumes you have the ingredients on hand and will be able to focus your attention on meal prep.

I got an email recently from a representative at Real Simple offering me a copy of their new cookbook Real Simple Best Recipes: Easy, Delicious Meals. A lot of the dishes are good one-dish options. For me, most of the mains could be rounded out with a salad and a loaf of good bread. A lot of the recipes can be easily adapted to sue what you have on hand.

The first recipe I tried was for Deep-Dish Polenta Pizza. The recipe itself called for a topping of sun-dried tomatoes, radicchio and mozzarella. It also called for you to make polenta from scratch. I had none of those things on hand, but I did have some premade polenta (Fra Mani brand, from Costco!), stewed tomatoes and shallots (and mozzarella).

Deep-Dish Polenta Pizza
This is more of a method or idea than a recipe, so I'm going to give you the gist and you can take it from there.
  • Heat the oven to 400.
  • Prepare about 3 cups of polenta (either from scratch, by whisking 1 cup of polenta meal in 2 cups of boiling water for about 5 minutes*, or whisking premade polenta to loosen it up) and stir in about 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese.
  • Spread polenta in the bottom of an oiled baking dish (a 9" pie pan works perfectly).
  • Top polenta with ingredients of your choice. The recipe called for sun-dried tomatoes, shredded radicchio and mozzarella. I used stewed tomatoes, thinly sliced shallots and fresh mozzarella.
  • Bake for about 20 minutes, until toppings are melting and softened and the edges of polenta are starting to crisp.
Try this recipe with whatever ingredients you have on hand. I think this would be fabulous with cooked sausage, fennel and asiago cheese.

* I know that true polenta needs to be cooked slowly and low, for at least 30 minutes. What we're doing here is cooking the polenta just enough to hydrate it.


Stefan Jones said...

Pre-made polenta?

I'm telling.

Sunday Cook said...

I know. The only reason I bought it, is it was from Fra Mani, Paul Bertolli's company and I figured it couldn't be too bad. It was quite good, but it still felt wrong, I admit.

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